United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Anderson/Greenwood Division
Imani Aliyah Braswell also known as Cathy Kirkland Braswell also known as Cathy Delores Kirkland, Plaintiff,
Administrator Gillispie, Tim Eubanks, Lisa Gainey, Pam Byrd, Southern Health Partners, Veronica Deas, Nurse Corey, Defendants.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION OF MAGISTRATE
JACQUELYN D. AUSTIN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on a motion for summary judgment
filed by Defendants Administrator Gillispie, Tim Eubanks, and
Lisa Gainey [Doc. 41] and another summary judgment motion
filed by Defendants Southern Health Partners, Veronica Deese,
Byrd, and Nurse Corey [Doc. 49]. Pursuant to the provisions
of 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and Local Civil Rule
73.02(B)(2)(d), D.S.C., this magistrate judge is authorized
to review all pretrial matters in cases filed under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983 and to submit findings and recommendations to the
proceeding pro se, filed this action on October 31, 2017,
alleging violations of her constitutional rights pursuant to
42 U.S.C. § 1983 based on her claim that Defendants were
deliberately indifferent to her medical needs and also
alleging violations of the Health Care Insurance and
Portability and Accountability Act of 1996
(“HIPAA”) and the Federal Privacy Act of 1974
(the “Privacy Act”). [Doc. 1.] On July 5, 2018,
Defendants Gillispie, Eubanks, and Gainey filed a motion for
summary judgment. [Doc. 41.] The next day, pursuant to
Roseboro v. Garrison, 528 F.2d 309 (4th Cir. 1975),
Petitioner was advised to respond to the motion and of the
possible consequences if she failed to adequately respond.
[Doc. 44] Defendants Deese, Byrd, Corey, and Southern Health
Partners filed a motion for summary judgment on July 19,
2018. [Doc. 49.] And the following day, the Court filed
another Roseboro order. [Doc. 50.] Subsequently,
Plaintiff filed a letter in which she agreed to a Rule 41
dismissal of Defendants Gillispie, Eubanks, and Gainey but
requested that the Court not dismiss her action as against
Defendant Southern Health Partners. [Doc. 67.]
October 4, 2018, Plaintiff filed a response
stating/requesting as follows:
Defendants Southern Health Partners, [Byrd, Deese, and Teal],
are hereby asked that they provide me with a copy of my
medical records from Chesterfield County Detention Center.
All forms that I submitted and grievances that I wrote while
in custody. The giving me the wrong medication the wrong
dosage. The yellow sticky note w[h]ere they put on my folder
denying me my meds.
[Doc. 76.] The same day, Plaintiff filed another response
conceding that Defendants Gillispie, Eubanks, and Gainey
“are granted [summary judgment].” [Doc.
October 11, 2018, Defendants Deese, Byrd, Corey, and Southern
Health Partners filed a reply opposing Plaintiff's
request for discovery and responding to Plaintiff's
filing to the extent the filing opposed summary judgment for
other reasons. [Doc. 79.] The two summary judgment motions
are now ripe for review.
was a pretrial detainee at the Chesterfield County Detention
Center (“the CCDC”) during all times relevant to
this action. [Doc. 1 at 7; see also Doc. 49 at 2.]
During the times relevant to the action, Southern Health
Partners had a contract to provide medical services at the
CCDC, and Defendants Byrd, Deese, and Teal were nurses
employed by Southern Health Partners doing work at the CCDC.
[Doc. 49 at 2.]
alleges Defendants disclosed private information regarding
her medical condition to other CCDC inmates. [Doc. 1 at 6,
15-16.] She also alleges that Defendants failed on some days
to provide her with certain medications that she needed for
particular health conditions. [Id. at 6, 16-20.]
Based on these factual allegations, Plaintiff alleges
violations of her rights under HIPAA, the Privacy Act, and
the Eighth Amendment. [Id. at 4-5, 15-20.] Plaintiff
seeks $500, 000 in actual damages and $1, 000, 000 in
punitive damages and an order requiring Defendants to
“[g]ive classes on HIV/AIDS.” [Id. at
Construction of Pro Se Complaint
brought this action pro se, which requires the Court to
liberally construe his pleadings. Estelle v. Gamble,
429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976); Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S.
519, 520 (1972); Loe v. Armistead, 582 F.2d 1291,
1295 (4th Cir. 1978); Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d
1147, 1151 (4th Cir. 1978). Pro se pleadings are held to a
less stringent standard than those drafted by attorneys.
Haines, 404 U.S. at 520. The mandated liberal
construction means only that if the Court can reasonably read
the pleadings to state a valid claim on which the plaintiff
could prevail, it should do so. Barnett v. Hargett,
174 F.3d 1128, 1133 (10th Cir. 1999). A court may not
construct the plaintiff's legal arguments for her.
Small v. Endicott, 998 F.2d 411, 417-18 (7th Cir.
1993). Nor should a court “conjure up questions never
squarely presented.” Beaudett v. City of
Hampton, 775 F.2d 1274, 1278 (4th Cir. 1985).
for a Cause of Action Under § 1983
action is filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, which
provides a private cause of action for constitutional
violations by persons acting under color of state law.
Section 1983 “‘is not itself a source of
substantive rights,' but merely provides ‘a method
for vindicating federal rights elsewhere
conferred.'” Albright v. Oliver, 510 U.S.
266, 271 (1994) (quoting Baker v. McCollan, 443 U.S.
137, 144 n.3 (1979)). Accordingly, a civil action under
§ 1983 allows “a party who has been deprived of a
federal right under the color of state law to seek
relief.” City of Monterey v. Del Monte Dunes at
Monterey, Ltd., 526 U.S. 687, 707 (1999).
1983 provides, in relevant part,
Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance,
regulation, custom, or usage, of any State . . . subjects, or
causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or
any person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation
of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the
Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured
in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper
proceeding for redress . . .
42 U.S.C. § 1983. To establish a claim under §
1983, a plaintiff must prove two elements: (1) that the
defendant “deprived [the plaintiff] of a right secured
by the Constitution and laws of the United States” and
(2) that the defendant “deprived [the plaintiff] of
this constitutional right under color of [State] statute,
ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage.” Mentavlos
v. Anderson, 249 F.3d ...